All posts for the month August, 2017

7 Unobtrusive Friendly Tips to Offer to First-Time Home Sellers

Published August 29, 2017 by Real Estate Leads

Business partnership. House agent greeting customer in officeYou’ve secured your client and they’ve agreed to list their home with you. Great, you’ve turned your opportunity into a client and your prospecting strategies are paying off. There’s standard protocol choices that a realtor will go through when he or she determines that the client is a first-time home seller, and it’s good to have a less-procedural approach sometimes as you move through the stages of listing and selling their home.

Here at Real Estate Leads, our online real estate lead generation system has been very helpful for realtors all across Canada, and as we’ve stated many times, prospecting effectively in real estate is all about establishing relationships, expanding your skill base, and – most importantly – making every opportunity into the most it can be. Sellers who sell their home quickly and / or get their asking price or beyond will hold you in very high regard, and quite likely request your services again years down the road.

As regards that less-procedural approach, it can be very helpful to make less-important but still valuable tips to your clients and present them in a very conversational way. Let’s discuss a few of them here:

Know and Suggest the Best Day to List the Home

Experienced realtors will know the best days and seasons to list a home based on it’s specifics and / or location . This time period will vary depending on the local community, the weather, time of year, and a host of other factors, and of course including the vibrancy of the present real estate market – or lack of it. This is a great one to discuss with your new clients very early on in the process

Be Direct About the Suitability for Immediate Showing

It’s perfectly acceptable and entirely advisable to be up front with people about whether their home is ready for showing, or what it needs to get to that point. Allow an open house if the home is conducive to an open house.

Showing a home that is not ready for it can mean a squandered opportunity with a potential buyer who may have been willing to pay asking price, a big loss for owners who are looking to move their home quickly and for the price they want.

Be Proactive in Preparing a House for Showing

Related to the above, an agent should be very involved in both recommending and working to make the home truly ready for sale. Most homes show better with about half of the furniture removed. Ideally buyers walk in the door and can get the feel for the space they’ll have at their disposal. Another industry-wide choice is home staging to boost selling power and appeal.

Painting is often the single best improvement you can make. Dings in the woodwork or gouges in the walls make your home suggest there’s going to be deferred maintenance. Always a big negative for an prospective buyer.

Advise Flexibility with Showings

In as simply a suggestion manner as possible you should suggest your clients be flexible with showings. If they’re too much of an imposition, you might suggest they go away the first weekend their home is on the market. Sure, some might think it a bit intrusive to make a suggestion of that magnitude, but you’d be surprised how many couples are quite receptive to it. The best way to sell your home is to let a buyer inside with the buyers’ agent to tour in absolute peace and quiet.

Use your judgment whether or not to suggest having a family member or pet of any sort be absent from the home during showings. Again, you are being a professional and working in the ENTIRETY of your clients best interests. They should be understanding and appreciative of that Use judgment, but do be firm in saying what you feel needs to be said.

Recommend Professional Photography

Most clients will make this move on their own, but if not you are wise to make very clear how much they’ll benefit from working with a professional photographer who has a high-end 20+ megapixel DSLR camera. Advise them that it’s not enough to just get the angle right in the photo, the most popular photos are rich in colour, depth, and sharpness and they are visually appealing in a way that a series of snaps from a smartphone or point n’ shoot camera simply can’t be. Suggest further that they approve the virtual tour or photo tour before it is published online and / or in print.

Suggest Regular Monitoring of the Listing Online

Homeowners will know the property better than anyone, and it’s quite common to have ones make suggestions, queries etc. on the listing of their home as they are exposed to each day or several days a week via their computer or smartphone. As such, suggest your clients review their listing online regularly. Suggest that they can look at their home listing on various websites, also to make sure the information is always being stated accurately.

Agents do their best to ensure accuracy, but since it is their home, they’ll know the details better than anyone. When they spot something may be amiss, they’ll contact you immediately and you can react from there.

Share the Advisability of Booking Movers Well in Advance

Once an offer is accepted and a possession date is confirmed, tell you clients about how it’s very much in their best interests to book a moving service early if they intend to use one. The end of the month is always the busiest time of the year due to the rental market, and they can also help themselves out by starting to pack once the offer is accepted, even if the possession date has yet to be agreed upon.

Sign up with Real Estate Leads here to have online generated qualified real estate buyer and seller leads delivered to you exclusively and for your own protected region of the country. We’ll get you some leads, and you’ll work your magic in turning those opportunities into clients!

Housing Slowdown Could Bite Real Estate Industry as a Whole

Published August 15, 2017 by Real Estate Leads

REL-DepressedMarketsArticleNo one is going to suggest that the Canadian Real Estate Market Goes as the markets in Vancouver and Toronto go, but there’s also no denying that the each of these locales and size and intensity of the housing markets there have some serious sway in the national picture. Foreign buyer restriction legislation introduced in both has had an effect in cooling the local market, and as such there’s been something of a downturn from coast-to-coast when evaluated as a whole.

To be sure, there are other factors contributing to a drop in home sales in Canada in certain areas, and there’s also the issue of where certain side industries related to real estate have been set up based on the understanding that the market will continue to grow, or at the very least stay consistent. The contrary of that hasn’t materialized yet, but there’s rumblings that a significant downturn could be on its way.

Here at 4GoodHosting we’re keen to offer our online lead generation system for realtors, but we’re also wise to the twists and turns of the industry and this topic is definitely one that’s worth discussing.

The prospect of a performance drop for the Canadian residential real estate market looming just beyond the horizon has been forecast for years, and it’s a development that might prompt a mass exodus among the thousands of workers that have entered the sector over the past few years and buoyed to do so by the growth they saw in it. This included everyone from agents and home stagers to construction workers and tradespeople like home inspectors.

The big picture issue is that the loss of a large number of skilled industry-related professionals might lead to even more of an industry slowdown, and – in the even bigger picture – a troublesome slowdown of a national economy that has become accustomed to leaning heavily on the housing industry.

Take a look at red-hot Toronto, for example. The number of real estate agents working in the metro region has grown to over 48,000 since 2008, representing an increase of 77% that’s compared to a 26.9% growth country-wide during the same period.

More Risk for Tertiary Interest / Employment Groups

There’s no disputing that a lot of people see real estate as their get-rich-quick scheme, but as we’ve seen across generations – when the market turns, a good majority of these agents leave the industry. Of course, there has nearly always been too many realtors in major urban centres in Canada, and some would say that this downturn might actually have something of a benefit in that it would weed out of some of those agents who got into the business for the wrong reasons.

Realtors who are reputable, well established, skilled, and financially solid will be more likely to weather the storm, but it is those tertiary sector jobs that will almost certainly take a hit and where the ‘established’ individuals won’t have the buffers they need to necessarily survive the downtimes.

Much of this will be related to the fact that home stagers, remediation pros, inspectors etc etc. are directly affected by the basic number of homes being bought and sold. They don’t have the additional interests or revenue streams that a realtor may have, and this will be particular true of service providers who aren’t well and long-term established.

Not a Cause for Immediate Concern

Most senior economists, however, seem to be of the belief that such a decline will not be an immediate threat, with the consensus being that the jobs slowdown will not occur in a single month, but over a six-month to one-year period, and the hit to consumption may take up to a couple of years to really be felt significantly.

Others still argue that the impact will be more pronounced and longer-lasting, perhaps even going so far as to cut down Canada’s annual GDP growth rate by 0.5% over the next 5 years.

One thing is almost certain – there’s going to be a “sharp” housing correction in Toronto and Vancouver, but whether or not that translates nationally remains to be seen. The results came right before recent data showing a 6.7 per cent drop in national home resales in June, the largest monthly decline since 2010 and the third consecutive month of such decreases.

As a realtor, you’re working in your best interests to carry on with extensive prospecting and marketing efforts to keep building your name so that you’re in good stead no matter what the future may bring in the real estate business. Sign up for Real Estate Leads here and receive qualified online-generated buyer and seller leads every month delivered to you exclusively.

Appraising Clients on The Best Ways to Approach Bidding Wars

Published August 10, 2017 by Real Estate Leads

3D Render of Morph Man with house and gavelReal Estate markets in certain locales across Canada are as hot as they’ve ever been, and there’s no getting around the fact that it means that bidding wars are often the norm for attractive properties. Here at Real Estate Leads we’ve put a lot of effort into providing our online lead generation system for realtors together, but another part of what we do is share industry insight that realtors can share with their clients OR those clients can benefit it from it themselves directly.

As stated, these bidding wars are standard procedure in many parts of Canada. More and more prospective buyers are facing off against another buyer for their dream property, and no doubt it can be stressful. Far too many people go above and beyond their REAL purchasing means, but there’s no reason you have to drain your bank account in order to purchase a home you love. Realtors who have been involved in many multiple-offer situations during their careers have loads of advice on how you can best approach a bidding war and act prudently within it.

Every bit of their advice circles around one particular maxim; make homeownership decisions with your head, not your emotions. We’ll add to that it’s often far too easy for prospective buyers to falsely insulate their perception of what makes the home a ‘must-have’ when the prospect of a bidding war is looming. The token first consideration is to be 100% honest with yourself and always be reevaluating your position with an especially critical and objective view. After all, the purchase of a home is very much not one to be taken lightly!

Anyways, here we go with our 6 tips for being in a bidding war for a home.

Understand Market Value

Regardless of what a house may be listed for, it will typically end up selling for what it’s truly worth. It’s recommended to determine the home’s market value by consulting with a real estate agent or looking up comparable properties via the local MLS before bidding accordingly. For example, if the house is listed for $100,000 less than it should be then most of the offers won’t extend past the initial round of bids. In these instances, prospective buyers who bid low likely shouldn’t have been there in the first place.

Don’t Hold Back on Putting in Your Best Offer

Should you be up against 2 or 3 other bids, it may surprise people to learn that it’s best to give their best offer right away. You can then be of the perspective that if you don’t get the house, you can have some assurance in knowing that you gave it your best bid. Keep in mind that putting in your best offer doesn’t always mean going beyond your budget – determine a limit and stick to it. This is about getting the most ideal home for you, and not about ‘coming out on top.’

Nix Your Conditions

It will also be beneficial to have any and all prospective homebuyers understand that removing conditions from your offer may make your bid more appealing to the seller, and particularly so if your bid is similar to that of another buyer who’s less flexible in this regard. The financing condition is fairly easy to remove, as long as you have completed the mortgage approval process in advance of your bidding. Another recommended consideration is to think about eliminating the home inspection condition. That doesn’t mean you forego the actual inspection, however, as if you’re really interested in a home you can then pay on your own for an inspection before you state your offer as compared to doing so after you bid.

Bring a Certified Cheque

This one is big; If you’re serious about purchasing a home then bring a bank-certified cheque in the amount of the offering you’re prepared to make so that – should it be accepted – the sellers can deposit the money into their account right away. This has twofold benefits; one, it shows them you’re 100% committed to going through with the purchase, and two – it really gives them explicit incentive to move forward with your offer on the home.

Leave Ego Out of It

As suggested above, it’s unfortunately all too common to have problems arise when buyers get carried away with the competition and become compelled and singularly focused on winning the bidding war. Nothing is worth stretching yourself beyond your means financially. Being house poor is a real condition and increasingly legitimate problem for every greater numbers of people these days.

There’s no debating that having the wherewithal and good judgment to be able to accept that you’ve been eliminated from the bidding war is SO important if you want to eventually be in an ideal home AND one you’ll be able to afford. This cannot be shared with your clients earnestly enough!

Which leads to the final tip,

Be Prepared to Walk Away

Go ahead and be optimistic about your max bid but also be ready to move on. As is the common belief in the industry amongst realtors, there is a 90+% chance that any home that you see as being ‘perfect’ and ‘can’t miss’ will be outdone by one that’s either already on the market, or will be on it before long. This advice is even more practical for buyers who are already living in a home that they either own outright, or the majority of it. They absolutely do NOT want to be making ill-formed decisions with the equity they’ve worked so hard to build.

Being informative and helpful for your clients begins with establishing prospective buyers and sellers AS clients in the first place. To that end, our system is a great choice for profit and business growth-minded realtors across Canada. Sign up for Real Estate Leads here and receive qualified online-generated leads delivered to you exclusively for your protected region of the country.

From there, take those opportunities and work your magic putting people in homes they love on the way to making a strong name for yourself as a realtor in your community!